weddings at st. john's
Churches are very special places and there are some things about a church wedding that you can’t get anywhere else, and all our Churches are picturesque, welcoming venues for a wedding. We’re delighted to welcome couples and families for weddings that are traditional and modern, formal and informal. We are here to help you make your special day personal, meaningful, spiritual, beautiful.
Whether you’re just dreaming of a church wedding, or well into the planning already, we are ready to advise and support you.
Firstly please contact us to discuss the date and time of your wedding, to make sure the Church is available.
The Legal bit
To ensure the marriage complies with both UK Civil and Church law, there are certain aspects of a church wedding that must be fulfilled, including:
A Qualifying Connection
You don’t need to be a Church attender to marry in Church. By law, you qualify to marry in the Church if either of you lives in the Parish, or have done for 6 months or more; if either of you were baptised here or you worshipped here; if one of your parents lived in the Parish for 6 months or more; or if they or your grandparents were married here. If none of those apply, do still contact us, to see what can be arranged.
Reading of Banns
Banns are an announcement in church of your intention to marry and a chance for anyone to put forward a reason why the marriage may not lawfully take place.
Banns are to be read during the main service on three Sundays in the three months prior to the date of the wedding. If one of you (or both) live in a different parish you will also need to have your Banns called in your parish Church too. Our Vicar will help you with this.
There are some circumstances in which you may need a Licence, rather than having Banns read. Our Vicar will advise you if these apply to you.
Guidelines for divorcees
If you are divorced, it may be possible to marry in church. Do contact us – and we will arrange for you to complete an extra form and to meet with the Vicar to talk about your situation.
A church wedding can be as lavish or as simple as you want it. It can include hymns and Bible readings as well as other inspirational words, poems, music and prayers as long as they are acceptable. There are many popular and exciting ones to consider – read them online at www.yourchurchwedding.org and see if what they say seems important to you. The Vicar will go through the service with you both and your music choices can be discussed with our organist. If you decide to provide your own printed Order of Service, we can help you put this together.
Please discuss with us any thoughts you have about the type and placing of arrangements, so that your florist enhances the beauty of the surroundings as well as co-ordinating with your colour scheme.
Photographs and videos
You will naturally want your special day captured by a photographer, and perhaps on video too. Our Vicar will be pleased to make sure they get all the best shots!
More guidance and advice
Our Vicar is very experienced at weddings… and marriage! If you would appreciate guidance on any matter at all, please know that the Church is here to support you – not only as you prepare for the Big Day, but for the rest of your life together.
There is no doubt that the choices you make about your wedding day can make a huge impact on the cost. If you choose to marry in church, we want it to be a day that is personal and special for you, but that need not mean you spend a fortune.
There is a legal fee for marrying in a church; these fees have ancient origins and make a contribution to the provision of a church in your community. You will need to work out the total costs with the Minister early on so that you know what to expect on your final bill. We will provide you with an itemised bill when you plan your wedding so that you can see exactly what you will be paying for. All fees are to be paid prior to the wedding. We normally advise couples to work towards a budget of £600 to cover all the legal fees, organist, etc.
A rehearsal for the service will take place at a mutually agreed time, usually a few days before the wedding, with all the key people present.
The vows that you make are at the heart of your wedding day. Church is the only place you can make promises this big to each other. By making these promises in church, you invite a loving and profoundly caring God to help you keep them.
You will promise to comfort, love, honour and protect your spouse, and, forsaking all others, be faithful to them as long as you both shall live – and also say:
I……take you ……
to be my wife… …my husband,
to have and to hold
from this day forward;
for better, for worse,
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish,
till death us do part;
according to God’s holy law.
In the presence of God I make this vow.
The next step
You’ve already made the big step of deciding to marry. Now one small step for man and wife… email us or pick up the phone! We look forward to hearing from you.